American writer Samuel Clemens, better known by his pen name Mark Twain, has given us some literary gems with Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn and his travel adventures in 19th-century Europe and to Australia and New Zealand. In How to Tell a Story and Other Essays, Twain discusses the telling of stories, rather than providing more stories. Humor, Twain says, is American while comic is English and witty is French. He follows this typically brilliant essay with examples of storytelling and some intriguing experiences of "mental telegraphy".
One of America's most renowned storytellers, Mark Twain was not stingy with sharing his techniques. In the audiobook How to Tell a Story and Other Essays, Twain delves primarily into how to tell humorous (as opposed to comic or witty) stories, that most difficult of narrative genres.
Voice talent Brian Troxell tells stories like "The Golden Arm" and "The Wounded Soldier" almost as successfully as Twain might have done, while simultaneously delivering Twain's instructions as he proceeds. In other words, Troxell both pauses and ensures that the listener notes the pauses. "The Golden Arm", which sounds like a campfire story supplemented with stage directions, is written in so-called Negro dialect, and is much easier to hear than to read.
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